Rhetorical Analysis Of The Pleasures Of Eating By Wendell Berry

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In 1990, author Wendell Berry released an essay titled “The Pleasures of Eating”. The essay focused on the responsibilities of eating, which includes self-awareness regarding what one’s consuming. Berry discusses how to eat responsibly throughout his piece, often citing the hidden dangers of the food industry, which includes the unjustifiable treatment of animals. Berry uses the rhetorical appeals in relation to these matters which allows him to connect and convey his message more strongly toward Americans, especially those living more rural lifestyles.
Berry begins his essay by giving a solution for how city people can bring new life to American farming and rural life. Berry’s solution is simply to “eat responsibly” (1). He elaborates on
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Berry appeals to ethos by establishing his credibility in the beginning of the essay. Berry states that after most of his lectures that revolve around the decline of rural life and farming in America, he is often questioned by people regarding what city people can do to help (1). Through revealing that he does lectures often regarding American farming and rural life, Berry is able to establish that he is knowledgeable on the topic and most likely has past experience with the lifestyle. Due to this knowledge and possible prior experience, his audience is much more likely to believe what he’s saying. Berry lists seven suggestions revolving around how to eat more responsibly in his essay. Among these suggestions include participating in food production to whatever extent you can, preparing your own food, learning the origins of your food, dealing directly with a local farmer or gardener, learning as much as one can about the economy, learning what is involved in the best farming and learning about the life histories of the food species by direct observation (4-5). Berry’s audience may have a hard time conforming to these suggestions, especially if they do not believe he follows them himself. To address this possible audience concern, Berry attempts to persuade his audience by establishing credibility. Berry …show more content…
Logos is important since it appeals to the audience’s intellect. Facts and evidence are both presented in order to create an overall strong argument. Berry provides facts frequently throughout his essay such as in the quote stated in the prior paragraph when he discusses consumers’ knowledge regarding the lives of the animals responsible for the meat they are eating. Berry states that it would not do any good for a consumer to know that the steer one’s hamburger came from spent its life standing in its own excrement or that the calf that yielded the veal cutlet one’s eating spent its life in a box (3). Although not every animal is treated in unfavorable conditions, it is common knowledge that the majority of animals aren’t treated pristinely before being killed for their meat. Many of these animals being held in captivity are overly dependent on antibiotics and other drugs which is not an ideal situation (Berry 3). Crops are also dependent on toxic chemicals such as pesticide which many consumers may not be aware of. Berry states the fact that food companies have and are attempting to keep consumers from discovering too much about the issues of the quality and health of their food (3). The only true way to better the treatment of animals to be killed for meat and prevent the spraying of toxic chemicals onto crops is for the public to develop an awareness of what is truly happening in the food

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